§ Dr. D. Johnson
asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance (1) under what Statutory Instrument or regulation he is authorised to pay sickness benefit, due to a certified patient in a mental hospital, to the administration of such hospital instead of the beneficiary himself, or to the person who has been nominated by him in accordance with the prescribed procedure for nominating a person to whom benefit should be paid in respect of persons unable to act;
(2) under what Statutory Instrument or regulation he is authorised to pay sickness benefit, due to a voluntary patient in a mental hospital, to the administration of such hospital instead of to the beneficiary himself.
§ Mr. Boyd-Carpenter
In the case of a certified or a voluntary patient who is unable to act, and for whom the court has not already made an appointment, Regulation 17 of the National Insurance (Claims and Payments) Regulations, 1948 (S.I. 1948, No. 1041), authorises the Minister, upon receipt of a written application, to appoint a person to receive and deal with any benefit due on his behalf. A hospital management committee may constitute a person for this purpose. The Regulation does not prescribe any procedure for a beneficiary who is unable to act to nominate some-88W one to be appointed to act on his behalf, but where the wishes of a beneficiary are known, or there is a suitable relative willing to act, the Minister will normally make his appointment accordingly. In the case of a voluntary mental patient who is able to act, the sickness benefit is paid to him or to some other person at his request.